W. Michael Hay, a pastor and former high school faculty member in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, combines his love of Agatha Christie novels and dry wit into the fictional mystery novel, "Salmon Surprise"
The body of public house waitress Dora Finch is found on the grounds of the Minnington Estate, and it's up to Scotland Yard to solve the mystery. But they soon find that a member of the Minnington household staff is a little quicker at picking up clues than some of their best investigators.
"Salmon Surprise" opens with the introduction of the Minnington family, the local aristocracy in a quiet British town. Ruled by American millionaire-turned-aristocrat, Sir Clifford Minnington, the remainder of the Minnington household is comprised of Clifford's wife Lady Opal, their manipulative son, Roland, and his drug addicted sister, Claudia. As Scotland Yard investigates the homicide, suspicious characters begin to appear as the story unfolds: there's Dora's would-be boyfriend, a handsome accountant named Erskine; Jasper Dunwoody, a popular man-about-town; Sir Oswald Bunbarrel, Jasper's employer and a known member of Parliament; the owners of the public house in which Dora worked; and Sir Oswald's arch-nemesis, the busy-body Elinor Drumville. Through it all, Minnington staff member Miss Edna Winwood quietly gathers information and sorts it into clear lines leading her to the potential suspect; a solution still unclear to the overly-confident investigators.
Hay intricately weaves the characters' web of relationships to create an entertaining mystery for readers. As the characters develop, details and secrets are revealed that even the characters themselves don't expect. Miss Winwood emerges as an integral part of solving the mysterious murder of Dora Finch, much to the chagrin of the Chief Inspector of Scotland Yard, and her success leads her to start down a new path in her life ... but you'll have to wait until the next Winwood mystery to find out where it will lead.
"Salmon Surprise is a mystery novel that is driven by characters and humor," Hay says. "Anyone who enjoys reading classic murder mysteries for leisure will enjoy the adventures of Miss Winwood."
Hay hopes the detailed character development and humorous story lines will have readers guessing who killed Dora Finch while enjoying a genuine murder mystery written with a tilt of the hat to Poirot and Marple, and maybe even a wink to Clouseau.
W. Michael Hay spent his entire educational career in the Catholic school system before entering the priesthood in 1992. He has served as a pastor and high school faculty member in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati ever since.